GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. - If you're thinking we seem to be behind the curve for ice out dates, you're right. Lake Minnetonka is still a sheet of white. The median ice out date for this favorite is April 14th. Lake Nokomis is already past it's average ice out date of April 4th.
Typically one of the first to declare ice out is Lake Pepin in late March or early April. White Bear Lake usually clears on or around April 14th. A bit further north, Forest Lake tends to melt a bit earlier. It usually takes until late April to clear Lake Mille Lacs.
None of these, or any other Minnesota lake has been declared ice out yet for 2014.
So when will it happen? The short answer is later than average. It's a question without a clear cut answer, and one that depends on many factors. Warm temperatures and sunshine, of course, make a big difference. But several rainy or windy days would also help to melt ice.
If you remember last year, it was a very late ice out season. Lake Mille Lacs and Lake Calhoun along with several others set new records for late ice out, some not clearing until mid May. There's no reason to suggest that will happen again